It’s easy to assume that since almost every company in existence has employees that want to use mobile devices to do their job, then almost every company needs some sort of EMM, right?
Or not... What about companies that are already taking advantage of mobility in various ways, but don’t need full suites of EMM products? This question has been leading me to think about the size of the total addressable market for EMM, and whether or not you need it to take advantage of mobility in the workplace.
For this conversation, I’m considering EMM to encompass MDM; MAM techniques that include app-wrapping, SDKs, ISV/EMM vendor partnerships; work/personal frameworks on devices like iOS 7, Knox, and Android work; and apps that specifically come directly from EMM vendors, including enterprise app stores, email clients, secure browsers, and enterprise file sync and share. In other words, I’m treating “using mobility for work” and “enterprise mobility management” as two different things.
Looking at the landscape today, there are already a million ways to use mobility for work without using EMM:
- All devices already have email clients and browsers. Done and done.
- There are a lot of consumer apps that people are using for work.
- Many enterprise-oriented SaaS products have had mobile client apps for years.
- And we have plenty of mobile client apps that work with other more traditional enterprise applications, too.
- For situations where pre-made mobile apps or clients don’t exist, there’s a plethora of ways to make them.
- There are hundreds of options for mobile content distribution, enterprise file sync and share, and collaboration.
Then think of how many companies don’t have EMM. They’ve had iPhones and Android in their environments for years. They didn’t have MDM when it first came out, they’re not looking at EMM right now, and probably won’t have EMM in the budget for 2015, either.
Despite the lack of EMM (or even a formal mobile strategy), these companies are already taking advantage of mobility in all the ways listed above. You could argue that they’ve already had their mobile revolution—it started sometime between 2007 and 2010 or so, when everybody was getting their first iPhone. From then, advancements continued to come in. For example, at some point Exchange gets opened up; users realize there are a few mobile apps out there that will make their jobs easier; a sales department might move onto Salesforce; a modern enterprise file sync and share solution is put in place.
So then the question is what’s the threshold for using an EMM vendor? At what point does it make sense to tighten up all this ad-hoc enterprise mobility by using some MDM and MAM to pull everything together and make things more secure and run smoother?
Obviously I’m not talking about all companies when I ask this question. We know that the enterprise, regulated companies, and verticals like financial, government, healthcare, and education are a natural fit for EMM. But I’m talking mid-market and smaller—when do they move onto EMM? Do they necessarily have to?
If you’re an EMM vendor, how do you sell to these types of companies? They might think the benefits EMM are too soft.
Like I mentioned at the beginning, this is article is mostly a thought-exercise about how EMM will spread in the future, and how rapidly it will filter down into all sizes and types of organizations. Overall, it’s clear that we should be optimistic about all these angles.